RICHMOND, Va. – A 55-year-old woman acting as a surrogate for her daughter gave birth to triplets Tuesday.
The two boys and one girl were delivered a month and a half prematurely by Caesarean section at Bon Secours St. Mary's Hospital (search). Surrogate mother Tina Cade (search) experienced "mild complications," which the hospital said is not uncommon for such surgery.
Cade carried her own grandchildren for her oldest daughter, Camille Hammond, who suffers from endometriosis (search), a condition that affects the lining of the uterus and makes it difficult to become pregnant.
Hammond and her husband, Jason, both doctors at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, had tried for four years to become pregnant. Cade approached the couple with the idea of carrying their child and began hormone treatment last winter to turn back her biological clock — she had already entered menopause — and prepare her for pregnancy.
Months later, she was implanted with three test-tube embryos.
The babies were not due until mid-February, but doctors decided to perform a C-section because Cade was having excessive swelling and because of concerns about her heart.
The infants were in intensive care. The boys weighed 4 pounds, 9 ounces (2.07 kilograms), and 3 pounds, 12 ounces (1.70 kilograms); the girl weighed 4 pounds, 10 ounces (2.10 kilograms). Their names were not released.
Camille Hammond said she was "overwhelmed" when she saw them. "The three words I have to summarize my experience ... is 'God is good,'" she said.
Jason Hammond said his mother-in-law was resting and "doing fantastic." He added, "We are so excited. We are really blessed."
The National Center for Health Statistics said 12 children were born in 2002 to women ages 50 to 54 who carried triplets. The center does not maintain statistics for women 55 and over.
Cade is director of multicultural affairs at the University of Richmond.